Ayala Land hikes stake in Malaysian realty firm
PROPERTY giant Ayala Land Inc. has strengthened its foothold in the Malaysian property and construction industry by investing $92 million to increase its ownership in MCT Bhd to 32.95 percent from 9.16 percent.
In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) Friday, ALI said its wholly owned unit Regent Wise Investments Ltd. has exercised its option to acquire additional shares of MCT, which is envisioned to be a key player in the Malaysian real estate market in the long term.
“This transaction affirms ALI’s confidence in MCT’s solid track record in project execution and business strategy,” the property developer said. “MCT is poised to deliver its pipeline of integrated, mixed-use projects in Subang Jaya, Cyberjaya and Dengkil in Klang Valley, Malaysia, which aims to capture the demand from the middle income and affordable market segments.”
Last April, Regent Wise acquired the initial 9.16-percent stake in MCT—previously known as GW Plastics Holdings Bhd.—through a private placement amounting to $43 million or P1.9 billion. ALI thereafter entered into call option agreements with the two founders and majority shareholders of MCT—Barry Goh Ming Choon and Tong Seech Wi—that gave this opportunity to increase its interest up to a maximum of 32.95 percent.
First established in 1999 as a construction company, MCT specializes in mixed-use projects that include retail, office, hotel and mid- to affordable residential developments in Malaysia. MCT delivers residential projects at lower costs by using the modular construction technique and by being an integrated builder with an in-house design team, in-house trading company, direct execution of specialist works and its own pre-cast and ready-mixed concrete plants.
It was earlier reported that ALI was considering a potential debut into the “sukuk” or Islamic financing market to fund its foray in Malaysia’s property industry. Sukuk refers to a financing method that conforms with Islamic laws, which prohibit the charging of interest. Instead of selling IOUs, the borrower sells paper backed by tangible assets, which are compliant with Shariah.
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